Sunday, 8 May 2011

Heavy rain but things still happening

Off site most of the day but on my return I was not back long when I heard and then saw a Greenshank flying overhead, over the house heading north. I thought that was my 100th bird this year but when I counted up I found I had missed two so I'm on 102. Doh!
It was only yesterday that the House Martins returned in their usual numbers, but 2 pairs of birds have already half built their nest on one of the houses nearby.  The heavy rain overnight and again this morning must have helped with the mud they needed.
I had ventured out this morning but not for too long and was surprised that there were a few butterflies on the wing, mainly Small White, Orange-tips and Small Tortoiseshells, but also my first Small Heath of the year, on the short turf behind the village.

Small Heath

A hedgerow at the back I hadn't checked since the winter and had a few new flowers along it, Common Dog Rose, Raspberry and both Jacob's-ladder (Polemonium caeruleum) and Columbine, though the latter two are garden outcasts here, not wild plants, even though they are not very close to any garden or indeed where they could have been dumped.
Back in the garden, I did not put the trap out last night but did take the previous nights catch away to be released on the fell earlier. But in the garden during a little tidy-up I did find a few moths hiding, presumably off the previous night but not making it into the trap and decided to stay put. Nothing new, though one of a couple of pugs that got away may have been a Currant Pug. Best though was another Alder Moth (unless it was one of the two that beat me home) and a Clouded Silver.

Clouded Silver

Flowering plants - 167
Birds - 102
Butterflies - 13
Moths - 61


  1. "DOH!!" We all have them senior moments, Keith. Cracking Small Heath pic.

  2. I have to travel a bit further out of Morpeth for Small Heath but it is time to start looking. Nice selection of stuff on recent posts. Still no Bee fly up here though!

  3. Nigel,
    The soils around here are very sandy, with a layer of peat on the fell. The garden once you get below the topsoil is pure sand. That why I think it's good for the solitary bees and in turn their predators including Bee-fly.


    Cheers, Other things early as well as the moths here too. Common Blue should be next,in a few days and the blue damsels and 4-spot Chaser.